Wise, Lunacy Commissioner — Matter of

196 Public Papers of Governor Roosevelt

Opinion Accompanying Order of Removal From Office

State of New York
Executive Chamber
Albany, December 20, 1900

In the Matter of the Charges against Peter M. Wise, M. D., president of the State Commission in Lunacy — Opinion

Doctor Wise is hereby removed from office as president of the State Commission in Lunacy.

In making this removal I consider nothing but the statements and admissions of Doctor Wise himself as made in his testimony taken before me December 10th and11th instant, and submitted in the form of Exhibit 1 at the hearing on the charges December 20, 1900. The accuracy of this testimony was acknowledged by Dr.Wise's counsel.

Doctor Wise was guilty of gross impropriety in directly or indirectly, by suggestion and otherwise, soliciting subscriptions to the Copper Hill Mining Company, of which he was president, from his official subordinates of both sexes, including superintendents, doctors, stewards, and in at least two cases the heads of private asylums which are under the supervision of the State Commission in Lunacy. This Commission has extraordinary power, controls vast sums of money and deals with a peculiarly helpless class of people; so that it calls for a particularly high type of official rectitude. When the head of a department suggests in any way to a subordinate to take stock in any company which is under the control of the said head, the

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